World SSP: Andrea Locatelli Wins Rain Soaked Race One AT Magny-Cours Ahead Of Home Hero Lucas Mahias
2020 World Supersport Champion Andrea Locatelli takes his 11th win of the season denying a home victory from Puccetti Kawasaki’s Lucas Mahias in heavy rain conditions at the French Circuit. As well as securing Yamaha a fourth straight Manufacturers Title. The race was cut short on the last lap due to a red flag, but this did not change the result.
It was not the race that Brit Kyle Smith was hoping for as he was forced wide by Locatelli at Estoril corner on lap one, and was in third place for a few laps until he crashed at turn 15 on lap six, putting him out of podium contention. However he was able remount onto the GMT94 Yamaha R6 in 14th position and started to put in fastest lap after fastest lap to try and gain the positions he had lost, and he got to the back of the battle for fourth place until he crashed again, but this time at turn 1 on lap 13 to put his race to an end. He’ll be hoping to redeem himself in tomorrows race.
The Estonian Hannes Soomer was able to take his first every World Supersport podium in Magny-Cours finishing in third place and being the first ever Estonian be on a podium in World Supersport. Soomer started down in 16th position, so it was a great ride by the Estonian proving his Free Practice pace from Friday to remain in Saturday’s Race.
There was a great battle for fourth place between Raffaele De Rosa, Kevin Manfredi, Can Oncu and Manuel Gonzalez, with the battle being won by MV Agusta’s De Rosa who brilliantly managed to hold off the charging Manfredi, who gained eight positions to achieve a career best finish.
Can Oncu was able to make up 15 positions from 21st on the grid to finish in sixth position, Oncu has had form in wet conditions as he became the youngest Grand Prix winner at Valencia in 2018 in the wet conditions. It was a result Oncu has been looking for this season and hopefully this result and give him create momentum to finish the season strong.
Manuel Gonzalez dropped from third on the grid to seventh position which he has already achieved three times this season, proving the 2019 Supersport 300 champion to be very consistent this season and he’ll be wanting to continue this and try to break into the top five for tomorrows race to achieve his best result of the season.
Galang Hendra Pratama was continuing his good run on form this weekend running in ninth position until a crash at Estoril on lap five put an end to his hopes of achieving his best result of the season.
Karel Hanika on his debut in the World Supersport 600 class was running strong in the top 10, but on lap eight he crashed at the Nurburgring chicane which has caught out the likes of Jonathan Rea and Garrett Gerloff. The former Moto 3 rider will be bitterly disappointed and will be hoping to prove himself in race two tomorrow.
Can Locatelli take fifth double victory this season or will the likes of Kyle Smith and Lucas Mahias stop him in his tracks at 12:30 (GMT+2) for Race Two.
Featured Image: worldsbk.com